Working Up to Level 1

Since Level 1 is the lowest CMMI level, technically you just start there.  But, the truth is you do need to be successful at development to be at this “ad hoc” level.

Level 1 is characterized by working hard to be successful.  Your organization isn’t using a repeatable process, doesn’t use common practices across the company and doesn’t really seek to improve.

What does it take to “reach” level 1?

A chaotic environment – This is an environment which has no standards or common practices.

Ad Hoc – This is the result of the chaos inherent in a level 1 environment.  Each developer operates in their own silo and their work is a one-off effort.

Heroic Effort – Success is because of the strong capabilities and heroic effort of superstars.  Nothing seems easy and there are no 8 hour days.

Level 1 is more than a starting point, but lacks the maturity of a well-oiled machine.

What, then, does a level 2 organization have that a level 1 organization lacks?

Repeatable processes like agile development, measurements and analysis.